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Films energise me, says `promising star'

Teresa Cheung, you may think is a one-film wonder. A model by profession, she was born and raised in Canada. She was in Delhi on advertising assignments. She got noticed in her debut movie `Colour Blossoms'. She won the Most Promising Star Award at the recently held International Film Festival of Tamil Nadu. Ms. Cheung spoke to S.R. Ashok Kumar about her experiences in the film world.

For a few days last month, Teresa Cheung was the cynosure of all eyes, especially among those who came to the film festival.

"I was a student at Toronto University majoring in Fine Arts, History and English literature. My first experience (if one can call it so) before the camera was when I was 3 years old for an advertisement."

Fashion shows

Even as a student, Teresa modelled for fashion shows and acted in short films, though later she avoided the camera. She was married to a pop singer from Hong Kong and the wedding picture was taken by one of Hong Kong's most-admired lensman, Yonfan. The couple separated after a year. Later, Ms. Cheung met Mr. Yonfan, who asked her whether she would be interested in playing the lead role in his Colour Blossoms.

She agreed immediately. Mr. Yonfan by then had become a popular filmmaker in Hong Kong and had a dozen films to his credit.

"I am basically a film buff. I see all kinds of movies, particularly French films. When Yonfan and I got together for the film, he wanted to create something fine and funny. He is the last maestro as far as Hong Kong is concerned — a sophisticated and cultivated filmmaker. I am proud to be connected with the unit of Colour Blossoms. We have a great team in co-star Keiko, cinematographer Wang Yu and the music director is from India, Surender Sodhi."

Star attraction

Wherever she goes, Ms. Teresa Cheung has been a star attraction. When she was at the Berlin International Film Festival for the opening of her film, she got a good reception.

"Berlin was an eye opener for me. It sent out positive energy to me. It made me watch more films and the passion continues till today... I like this kind of energy."

But Ms. Cheung was hesitant to shed clothes for her movies. "When I came to know that I had to do such scenes, I was frightened and cried for more than three days. But in the end, director Yonfan convinced me as to why I needed to do the scene. Then I did as he wanted me to." What about her views on Chennai? She is quite impressed with the Tamil film, Sivakasi.

"I liked Vijay's action role and the songs. The hero has done a wonderful job and the heroine looks beautiful. I am ready to do films in any language provided they give me my salary. Indian food and men and women are beautiful and I like to come back here again."

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